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Work underway on retirement recommendations

5 October 2004

Work underway on retirement recommendations

Work is already underway on many of the recommendations of the Periodic Report Group on ways to improve private provision for retirement income, the Minister for Social Development and Employment Steve Maharey said today.

“The Periodic Report Group has found that the current mix of New Zealand Superannuation and private savings is working well for older New Zealanders, though more needs to be done to ensure people are saving enough to enjoy the retirement lifestyle they want.

“Many of the Periodic Report Group recommendations are already being acted on. The government is currently seeking public submissions on savings schemes in the workplace proposed in the report of the Savings Product Working Group. The Working Group’s proposed scheme would see all new staff automatically enrolled in a savings scheme, which they can withdraw from if they choose.

“Other work underway in response to the Periodic Report Group report includes:

Government is reviewing taxation of investment income to ensure any inefficiencies and distortions are addressed. The Retirement Commissioner has developed best practice guidelines for dispute resolution for superannuation scheme members. The Retirement Commissioner is undertaking pilot programmes to test the effectiveness of delivering education and information programmes in different ways, for example a telephone information service. The government agrees that we need to increase research and policy analysis on the adequacy of private provision for retirement. The government has agreed to set up an ongoing work programme to give more regular assessment of retirement income policy.

The Retirement Commissioner will monitor and report annually on the progress of the work programme, with the government providing an extra $90,000 funding this financial year for her increased monitoring and review roles. The government will also ask the Retirement Commissioner to review retirement income policy by the end of 2007. The review will be required by law to be repeated every three years after that date.”

The full government response is available at www.beehive.govt.nz/maharey

ENDS

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